Posts Tagged fire department diver dies during rescue operation

Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

Excerpts from CBSchicago.com:

Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio suffered from a rare heart condition that contributed to his death while he was trying to rescue a boater in the Chicago River on Memorial Day.

Bucio vanished in the river near 26th and Ashland around 8 p.m. He was pronounced dead after being pulled out several minutes later.

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s report said Bucio had a rare heart condition that led to his death. The official cause of death as ruled by the medical examiner is asphyxia with depletion of air from his diving tank due to cardiac arrhythmia. Lymphocytic myocarditis is an inflammatory reaction in heart muscle – it usually happens after a viral infection as the heart tries to fight a virus, according to Dr. Kousik Krishnan, a Rush University Medical Center cardiologist.

That response can weaken heart muscle, give signs of heart failure, and also make someone at risk of dangerous rhythm problems, Krishnan said. The rare condition, combined with an irregular heartbeat, could prove fatal.

“While the Scuba equipment functioned properly, the decedent likely exhausted his primary air supply at some point during the dive. This in turn caused him to not be able to activate other safety equipment that would have kept him afloat, and thus he sank below the surface,” stated the Cook County Medical Examiner.

The Chicago Fire Department is continuing its own investigation into the circumstances surrounding Bucio’s death and will examine whether protocols were followed.

 

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

Photos from Tim Olk of the funeral for Chicago FF/EMT Juan Bucio

Funeral for Chicago FF/EMT Juan Bucio 6/4/18

Tim Olk photo

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

Juan Bucio was a man of few words. Quiet but devoted. Stoic but determined. Disciplined and precise. Bucio preferred to let his work do the talking, family and his fellow firefighters said, whether it was in rescues or training. He was frequently first in team dive tests. He jumped out of a helicopter on Father’s Day to search for a boy missing near Jackson Park harbor.

Bucio’s sons, family, friends and firefighter family tried to press forward Monday, gathering for a funeral Mass to remember and salute their father, brother and comrade. During the bilingual service, family members described Bucio, a divorced father of two boys, ages 9 and 7, as the strong and quiet one.

Earlier Monday morning, firetrucks with black and purple bunting led a procession along Western Avenue to the doors of the church. Leading the way was the scuba team’s vehicle. Engine No. 13 carried Bucio’s casket, draped in the Chicago municipal flag on the back and Bucio’s fire jacket and helmet on the front.

Members of Bucio’s air and rescue team served as pallbearers and carefully unloaded the casket before heading in. One member of the team breathed heavily, clenching his fist as he fought back tears. Bucio’s sons, their gloved hands gently resting on the top of the casket and their heads bowed, led the pallbearers into the church.

At the end of the afternoon, when the procession arrived at the cemetery, a fire engine carried the casket to the burial site, followed closely by the Chicago Police Department’s mounted unit and the fire department’s air and sea rescue team, who marched in formation.

A priest eulogized Bucio, noting the similarities between his last name and buzo, the Spanish word for diver. A duet of trumpeters played Taps. The bagpipers played Amazing Grace. And the honor guard folded the Chicago flag from the atop the coffin and presented it to Bucio’s family.

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

A casket bearing the body of Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio, 46, arrives on June 4, 2018, for the funeral at St. Rita of Cascia Shrine Chapel on the South Side of Chicago. Bucio died during a rescue attempt last week. Chris Walker / Chicago Tribune photo

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

The family of fallen Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio at his funeral at St. Rita of Cascia Shrine Chapel on June 4, 2018. E. Jason Wambsgans / Chicago Tribune photo

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

St. Procopius Pastor Fr. Gary Graf addresses the sons of fallen Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio at his funeral at St. Rita of Cascia Shrine Chapel on June 4, 2018. E. Jason Wambsgans / Chicago Tribune photo

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

The funeral procession for Chicago firefighter Juan Bucio, 46, drives up North Harlem Avenue on the way to Mount Auburn Cemetery on June 4, 2018, in Stickney. Erin Hooley / Chicago Tribune photo

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

A casket bearing the body of Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio, 46, is carried on June 4, 2018, to a ladder truck after Bucio’s funeral at St. Rita of Cascia Shrine Chapel on the South Side. Chris Walker / Chicago Tribune photo

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

A casket bearing the body of Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio, 46, is hoisted on June 4, 2018, to a ladder truck after Bucio’s funeral at St. Rita of Cascia Shrine Chapel on the South Side. Bucio died during a rescue attempt last week. Chris Walker / Chicago Tribune photo

CFD FF/EMT Juan Bucio's funeral

The funeral procession for Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio arrives on June 4, 2018, at Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Stickney. Brian Cassella / Chicago Tribune photo

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

From CFDMedia on Twitter:

Funeral for Chicago Fire Department Firefighter Juan Bucio. 6/4/18

CFD Media photo

Funeral for Chicago Fire Department Firefighter Juan Bucio. 6/4/18

CFD Media photo

Funeral for Chicago Fire Department Firefighter Juan Bucio. 6/4/18

CFD Media photo

Funeral for Chicago Fire Department Firefighter Juan Bucio. 6/4/18

CFD Media photo

Funeral for Chicago Fire Department Firefighter Juan Bucio. 6/4/18

CFD Media photo

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

Two firetruck ladders hoisted an American flag into the air near the entrance of a Southwest Side church where mourners attended visitation Sunday for Juan Bucio, a Chicago Fire Department diver who died during a rescue attempt last week.

Bucio, who also served on the Chicago Police Department for several years, died May 28 while searching for a man who had fallen off a boat on the South Branch of the Chicago River near Ashland Avenue. The father of two young sons was separated from his partner for a brief period and pulled from the water before he was pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital about two hours after the initial dive.

The cause of Bucio’s death remains unknown. Fire and police investigators are continuing to review the rescue attempt while autopsy results are pending from the Cook County medical examiner’s office. Bucio is survived by nine siblings, including a sister who is a member of the Chicago Police Department and a brother who is a member of the Chicago Fire Department.

When the public portion of the visitation closed about 6 p.m., hundreds of firefighters from across Illinois and the Midwest lined up on a grassy lawn outside the church to take part in the traditional walk-through. Officials estimated more than a thousand firefighters took part.

Mourners will return to the church at noon Monday for Bucio’s funeral. A full honors burial will follow at Mount Auburn Cemetery, 4101 S. Oak Park Ave. in Stickney.

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

From CFD Media on Twitter:

Firefighter Juan Bucio Arrangements: Visitation – Sun, June 3rd, 3pm -9pm, @ St. Rita Funeral – Mon, June 4th, Noon, @ St. Rita Full Honors Burial to follow @ Mt. Auburn Cemetery, 4101 S. Oak Park Ave, Stickney, IL

CPD & CFD Honor Guard complete the procession of Firefighter Juan Bucio from the Medical Examiner’s Office to Blake Lamb funeral home.

CFD Media photo

CFD Media photo

CFD Media photo

Excerpts from wgntv.com:

The Chicago Fire Department’s Widows’ and Children’s Assistance Fund announced where donations can be made for Bucio’s family.

The Ende, Menzer, Walsh & Quinn  Retirees’ Widows’ and Children’s Assistance Fund (EMWQ) set up a memorial fund. The organization said 100 percent of proceeds will go to the family. Donations can be made at widowsandchildren.org or any BMO Harris Bank. For more information, visit widowsandchildren.org.

The 100 Club also set up a page for donations. Those wishing to make a donation can visit 100clubchicago.org.  In coming weeks, the 100 Club said it will visit the home of Bucio’s children to speak with their mother about providing educational assistance for the boys.

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Chicago Fire Department Lodd Firefighter Juan Bucio (more)

Excerpts from nbcchicago.com:

Firefighters were faced with a double emergency Monday night: first, man overboard and then the loss of contact with one of their own. Chicago Fire Department Commissioner Jose Santiago said it happened abruptly.

The results of the rescue diver’s autopsy were listed as pending as of Tuesday night. The possibility of a medical emergency or even the boat striking Bucio have not been ruled out.

Bucio, a father of two young boys, and his fellow divers, were searching for 28-year-old Alberto Lopez. Lopez was last seen on a boat Monday night with his friend on the Chicago River. A frantic call was made to 9111, but now the rescue has become a recovery.

Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

Chicago Fire Department diver Juan Bucio who died during a rescue attempt on the South Branch of the Chicago River was remembered Tuesday as a devoted father who loved being a firefighter and a member of the marine and dive team. He became separated from his dive partner in the water Monday night while trying to rescue a man who had fallen off a boat into the river near Ashland Avenue.

Bucio, a 15-year veteran who served on the fire department’s dive team for more than a decade, disappeared briefly in the water, was located and then was lifted onto the riverbank. He was taken to Stroger Hospital, where he was pronounced dead about two hours after firefighters received the rescue call.

Fire and police investigators are looking into the details of what happened to Bucio during the rescue attempt.  Two other divers were taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital in good condition, they were treated and released.

Bucio joined the fire department in 2004. A longtime lifeguard, he had the dive team in his sights and became a member a few years later. He was a strong swimmer who was adept at diving, working on the boats, and from a helicopter.

Nationally, Bucio is the 39th U.S. firefighter to die on duty this year, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. Water rescue- or dive team-related deaths are infrequent but not uncommon. Prior to Bucio’s death, nine firefighters died during water rescues between 2000 and 2017. But the fatalities of firefighters involved in water-related actions, from the searches for bodies to training, are more common.

The last on-duty fatality of a Chicago Fire Department diver was that of Eugene Blackmon, who died while attempting to recover the bodies of two men from the Little Calumet River in May 1998.

Bucio’s death came two days after a diver died while assisting with the recovery of a crashed plane in Ontario, Canada.

There will be a fire department procession when Bucio’s body is transported from the medical examiner’s office to a funeral home.

Excerpts from abc7chicago.com:

An investigation continued Wednesday into how Juan Bucio, a veteran Chicago Fire Department diver, died during a rescue attempt on the Chicago River on Memorial Day.

A closer look at video, shot by an ABC7 photographer moments before Bucio disappeared under the water, shows him and his partner in trouble as a fire department boat comes by. A source said that something may have been wrong with Bucio – a 15-year CFD veteran — before he went under. As crews on the boat called out to Bucio and his partner, the video shows Bucio go under the front of the boat while his partner puts his hands on the side to prevent himself from following. Then there is a frantic search. Later, rescue crews pulled Bucio’s body out of the river.

A source said the video shows Bucio too low in the water, signaling a possible sign of trouble. The incident happened after both divers had been in the water for a while looking for the missing boater.

The Chicago Fire Department is now waiting for preliminary results from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office which would tell them if Bucio sustained an injury that could have caused him to lose consciousness or if he may have suffered from a medical problem before he went under the boat.

As part of an investigation, Bucio’s equipment is being analyzed, his air pressure tank is being checked and everyone who had contact with him before and during the incident is being interviewed.

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